"Allowance" ?? Do You Provide, or No?

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Discus: Parents Forum: 2004 Archive - Part 2: "Allowance" ?? Do You Provide, or No?
By Nel (Nel) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 09:57 pm: Edit

Sept 8: Hi everyone; quick question---

Do you, or will you, provide a weekly cash "Allowance" to you kid while away at college?

If yes, how much per week & what do you expect it would "cover"?

If no, why not?

(Just curious, as my DD just left for college, and I am NOT planning on any "allowance" - we are paying for room/board, she's on a meal-plan, and she has a comfy room with all the necessities. So, she has food, a roof, necessitites/stuff brought from home & if she truly has to buy SubWay or Pizza or a tanning session, I feel she should pay for it out-of-pocket. She does have a college 'debit-type' card, where if she required books or a Bookstore item for school purposes, we can add value to the card for use/spending on campus.
A friend from work, who's DS will go to college in Fall 2005, says she plans to give him $50-per-week as 'spending money'... I asked WHAT THE HECK FOR? I could envision a kid supplying beer for the entire dorm floor given $50-per-week.)

Thoughts? Thanks! Nel

By Musicmom (Musicmom) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 10:27 pm: Edit

We also will NOT supply 'spending money'.
Yep, just hard-hearted folk here!

Our son signed for the (almost insignificant) Stafford loan ($2625); we agreed to pay remainder of tuition, fees, room, board,books.
He has had PT jobs for 2 years and has and will pay for toothpaste,shampoo,etc; car insurance, late nite pizzas, weekend trips to visit friends, concert tickets,etc,etc,etc.
He has a debit card to his checking acct; the bank has an ATM on campus. He can deposit workstudy checks into his acct and draw pocket $$.

Our son does not complain about our plan even though many of his friends' families DO provide an allowance. I think he actually derives satisfaction in earning (some) of his own way.
As it should be!

By Fendergirl (Fendergirl) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 10:30 pm: Edit

i do not get any allowance while in college actually - i never have. ive been working since the day after i turned 14, and if i wanted money before that i had to do things to earn the money, like wash my parents cars, or clean the whole house.. things like that.

i think in college a kid is definately old enough if they need money to work 5 hours a week on campus. that is plenty of spending money for a college kid.

i'm a college senior.. at my current job i worked about 50-60 hours per week over the summer, and i still have that job and will be working 20 hours per weekend till the end of october. i also have a job year throughout both semesters where i work about 8-10 hours. this gives me plenty of money.. enough that i will be buying a new car in march :)

By Backhandgrip (Backhandgrip) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:11 pm: Edit

My older kids had an account with money there for football and sport tickets, eating out and movies with friends.They did leave campus to do things but were reasonable.

By Mini (Mini) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:27 pm: Edit

Nope. The money from her research assistantship is whaat she lives on. (We paid for all the furnishings initially, and the trip to and fro.)

Our bigger fear is that she won't spend enough when she has educational opportunities before her (like trips to the opera or some such), and have made it clear that we will chip in whenever she needs for stuff like that.

By Alwaysamom (Alwaysamom) on Wednesday, September 08, 2004 - 11:31 pm: Edit

Nel, we do not supply an allowance to our Ds. The money they earn in the summer usually is what they use throughout the year. I know they each have friends who pay their own tuition through a combination of earnings, scholarship, and loans and the parents then give them money for spending. They also have friends who get allowance in addition to tuition and other expenses paid for. Every family does it differently according to their needs and their abilities. No one way is right, or wrong. And, depending where the child is going to school, $50/week spending money is certainly not excessive in a budget. My D who is in NYC often spends more than that in one week, and it certainly would not be even close to being enough to supply everyone on her dorm floor with beer! :)

By Candi1657 (Candi1657) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 12:12 am: Edit

I agree with the logic presented on these posts behind not supplying an allowance (and I myself don't receive one)...However, I do think it would be nice to get some help here or there (nothing exorbitant). I feel like I'm struggling a bit.

By Achat (Achat) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:00 am: Edit

Candi, do you have work-study at Yale? Hope it works out with work-study.

We did give our son some money to spend but he has found part-time work, albeit not regular. He helps at the alumni office with mailings and gets $7.50 an hour. Plus participating in a telethon for raising funds.

By Elleneast (Elleneast) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:17 am: Edit

I guess that I am one of the few who gives an allowance. My decision is based first on need and then on attitude. If my daughter had a sense of entitlement I would tell her to wait tables....inspite of how difficult it would be to make a regular job work with her course load and volunteer job.

She interned this past summer and worked part time for as many hours as she could fit around the internship. There is no way that she put enough in the bank to get through her school year so, once again, her Dad and I will give her money when she runs out. I suspect that her earnings will last until the new year. She has already found a babysitting job but to be honest, with a heavy course load, volunteering at the local hospital and teaching at a grammar school once a week, she has enough on her plate. She is appreciative of the fact that our giving her an allowance allows a little more time to take advantage of going to a school in NYC.

By Garland (Garland) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:18 am: Edit

We also do not provide an allowance, even though S is in a very expensive city (NYC). He won several small local scholarships, and a Byrd, and he combined these with his HS graduation presents for money for books and other expenses.

By Strick (Strick) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:25 am: Edit

$25 a week to cover gas and trips to Sack N Save (a local discount grocery), presents for birthdays, Christmas, etc. Our S's in a special program that doesn't allow him to work, though that will change next summer.

The trips to Sack N Save are what he treasures most. He calculates that his dorm meals cost $0.35 each and are over priced. :D

Probably too much money since he wound up saving most of it last year. On the other hand he did have what he saved to pay for repairs to his car recently.

By Alongfortheride (Alongfortheride) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:46 am: Edit

My son worked a summer internship that provided ten weeks of full time work. He also had an account with an existing balance - mostly graduation money, birthday money and a few weekends of work in hs. Not just a huge amount to start, but his job supplemented it nicely. He paid to set up his dorm, paid for books and will cover his spending money.

By Backhandgrip (Backhandgrip) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:48 am: Edit

Another issue is how it was for us and how you want to provide for your children. Like, I worked parttime all through college, and grades suffered on occasion when hours needed to be increased (like Christmas rush) and I changed classes around to meet work needs.So I don't want my kids working at least the first year or two.Also, I want my kids to be able to enjoy their campus so want them to attend sporting events at their school and concerts and participate in sports also. I know what it is like to pinch pennies for lunch so don[t want my kids in that position too.
And the kids are reasonable and smart and grateful about it. To me, I don't care if son sleeps late every day or arranges classes around that because we fully realize once he starts working it may be for 40 years straight.

By Dadx (Dadx) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:56 am: Edit

............WHAT THE HECK FOR?

Well, because we can, it will help him more than it inconveniences us, and because it makes his life easier.

If we come to consider that harmful instead of helpful, then we'll make an adjustment or stop.

By Rhonda63 (Rhonda63) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 09:14 am: Edit

D used summer earning for spending $$ freshman year and will do so soph year. It's quite possible that next summer she might do an unpaid internship, in which case I will provide her an allowance for the school year. The amount is not that significant to me, esp in light of the total cost of college.

$50/week doesn't seem excessive to me either, maybe a LITTLE on the high side. My D is in Providence and spent about $700/semester, which included toiletries, off-campus food (meals out and groceries for the dorm room), a few concerts, CDs, other incidentals. I guess that's a little less than $50/week.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 09:37 am: Edit

no she didn't need it.
She worked during summer and while that money mostly went toward school expenses, she is also able to put a bit away toward her school year.
Charge account at bookstore, allows her to bill us for textbooks if she wants as well as pick up snacks and videos for study breaks.
Work study job pays for books as well as gives her money for dinners out and meds.( she works as a computer technician which she loves and I think it is one of the highest paying jobs on campus, she also meets everyone}
When she comes home for breaks ( which really means winter break) I often give her money/surprises, to supplement her own earnings.
She hasn't asked for extra help, and I don't want to undermine her sense of independence by assuming that she can't budget the money she has, or live within those restrictive boundaries.
She and her friends are more likely to go up to trader joes and get stuff to cook a meal together, or try a new ( cheap) thai place, than go out and have a huge spending spree. THey get clothes at used stores, lots in portland, and trade them, really makes your closet stretch. Colleges have lots of cheap/free entertainment, and what her college doesn't have , the city offers.
She doesn't have a car, and one of the perks of Portland, is that it has great public transportation. Not having that expense saves $$$$$

By Fendergirl (Fendergirl) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 09:55 am: Edit

let me just say that during my freshman year of college i worked 5 hours a week on campus and that was more than enough money to pay for my expenses. sophmore year i also worked 5 hours a week on campus, and junior year i worked 10 hours a week on campus. of course i also had a job during the summers these years,but that went towards bills such as car insurance and whatnot. i don't see why there is any logical reason that a kid can't work 5 hours a week and attend college.

my best friend goes to NYU, is paying for it completely on her own (tuition is covered by her loans and scholarships) and she works to pay for her rent (rent in nYC is expensivvvvvvve) plus her food and any entertainment. She also has a gpa of about a 3.95 or something.. so for anyone who says you cant get good grades and work a job.. remember that.

By Arizonamom (Arizonamom) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 10:24 am: Edit

My S pays his car payments and his car insurance. He will also pay 1/2 of his college dept when he graduates. He is not working this first semester to get used to playing sports and his college workload as well as his adjustment to a new way of life. He will work next semester however. We give him a monthly allowance, not a lot. He has always been very thrifty. I discouraged both my kids from working during the school year and concentrating on their multitude of activities and their school work. They always worked full time in the summer at very well paying jobs. They never had free time as it was during the school year and were hard workers. If they had been going out and hanging out with friends during the week, then I would have encouraged a job.

By Concerneddad (Concerneddad) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 10:32 am: Edit

We give our son a modest monthly allowance. In fact, in an effort to teach him money management, we gave him all of the first semester $$$ upfront, with the caveat not to call home for $$$ unless it was for medical of life- threatening needs. LOL. So far so good.

We did not want him working the first year as he is attempting to follow the Creative Medicine strand which provides for a med school admission decision at the end of the soph. year. Thus, this year he is taking all but one pre-med class (O-chem) and is working his rear off.

By Originaloog (Originaloog) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 11:17 am: Edit

Our son pays for tuition, academic fees, books and spending money. We pay for health fee and housing.

Its the deal we made with him efore he started his college search and it served us all well. He worked like hell to get a total of $22k/yr in merit scholarships to Rensselaer.

By Bigdaddy (Bigdaddy) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 12:16 pm: Edit

No allowance. We pay the EFC of tuition, room and board, health insurance, car insurance and transportation to and from home. Everything else is her responsiblity. We would help pay for books, but she has been able to handle it so far.

D's income comes from working during summer and holiday breaks and an on-campus job.

50 bucks a week sounds like a lot to me. All of D's meals are paid for and, at her school, students are not charged at sports events and theatre productions. So, 50 bucks would buy more pizza and junk food than she could eat in a month.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 12:44 pm: Edit

We pay EFC. No car or car insurance.

D has an on-campus job and will be getting a summer job or jobs. She has a savings account that she's very protective of that can be tapped if she feels the need. She was set up with an initial amount for winter clothing and books. If she runs over on books, we can talk, receipts required.

By Desrtswimer (Desrtswimer) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 01:13 pm: Edit

My mom gave me my college money for the year up front and told me to budget it however I could. Without outside scholarships, the money would have JUST BARELY covered tuition, room and board. Looking at these numbers, I worked two summer jobs (one ending and then another one starts) and earned just about 2500 for the summer. I also won about 5000 in outside scholarships that went to my tution directly.

I still am allowed to keep the money my mom had budgeted this for this year, and most like will take the 2500 i earned this summer and save it for next summer so i can internship and not have to worry about getting a job. However, with the purchase of a laptop, plan tickets going back and forth a lot (im a bridesmaid in my brother's wedding, so I will have to come back a lot in the spring), room suppplies, books, and other various things, the money goes quickly.

I calculated it out that I will have about 200 dollars a month to spend. While this may seem like a lot, I will be in chicago with many opportunities that I do not want to pass up. I also declined my work study as my family has had bad experiences with working and grades. True, many people can do it, but when my older brother went from straight A to C's and D's his junior year, my mom decided no one else would work in school until at least our sophomore year in college.

I do not take what I am given for granted, and have spent hours making excel spreadsheets and changing the numbers around and seeing how this affects my budget. For example, when i remembered i was going to chicago from arizona :-) i had ot factor in about 500 dollars for a new wardrope, something none of my friends had to think about. a jacket alone will run about 300 dollars!

But for the op, who asked "what the heck for?"

for peace of mind :-) does your child now at home just eat and drink and sleep and go to school and be happy? She/he must go out and spend money to DO this, and that is what my 200 dollars a month will cover (and laundry detergent and medicine...do you guys know how EXPENSIVE that stuff is? ahhh!)

By Kjofkw (Kjofkw) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 01:40 pm: Edit

No allowances here. They stopped at age 18.

We pay tuition, room, board & fees, however. We told our children a fixed amount for college, and they knew anything over was their responsibility. The fixed amount was enough for our state school tuition plus room & board, and if they wanted something different, it was up to them to find scholarships, jobs, loans, whatever.

The before school shopping spree was our treat (it wasn't much for a boy), but all expenses after the move are his (books, materials, travel, activities, food out, etc.).

We had our children save half of every cash gift since they were born (typically $10 - $20 birthday gifts, graduation gifts, etc. -- nothing huge). We always told them it was going into their college fund, and it became theirs upon high school graduation. It added up to a nice starting sum (about a summer's job worth), so the intent is that he does not have to find a campus job the first year while he is settling into college. Summer work will hopefully supply enough spending money for future years.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 02:39 pm: Edit

I think having a job whether a work study job or a non academic volunteer job helps keeps kids in touch with "real" world.
It is not going to kill them to work 5-8 hours a week, in fact it will probably make them priortize their time more efficently.
I figured it like this
allow 10 hours per weekday for class and studying
50 hours
49 hours for sleeping ( 7 hours a day- optimistic)
42 hours for shopping & eating & preparing meals
this still leaves 27 hours a week for parties, extra homework and putzing around. Surely they can squeeze 5 hours away to work?

( and where do you buy your clothes?)
$300 for a jacket?
Save your pennies and dollars will take care of themselves.
Unless you are planning to wear the jacket for years ( which I actually do recommend but in that case you won't need a new one next year) you don't need to spend even close to $300 for a jacket.
REI is a cooperative which means that you get 10% back from purchases at end of year ( on non sale items) It might be worth looking at

By Ariesathena (Ariesathena) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 02:41 pm: Edit

No allowances when I was in college. Parents paid tuition, room, board, books, car insurance, and health insurance.

Car maintenance, gas, meals out, clothes, summer school, everything else was on me. I was definitely poor during freshman year, but got high-paying summer jobs after that (earning $4k, $6.5k, and $8k each subsequent summer). I interned during the school year for one semester but was not allowed to work. Needless to say, even with summer school, paying for the apt., I managed to live quite well. I do feel as if getting a real summer job was enormously helpful for getting employment after graduation.

Now... everything is on me, as my parents said that four years was enough. Eating lots of sandwiches...

By Tropicanabanana (Tropicanabanana) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 03:12 pm: Edit

It's true; the kids who have the most money are the ones that always end up buying the alcohol. I've noticed that people don't flaunt their wealth here through clothes or anything like that (I saw more LV bags at my high school than I have here) but through alcohol.

By Farawayplaces (Farawayplaces) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 03:35 pm: Edit

We also got our kids to save half of gifts and earnings for college, at least starting by middle school.

I agree that allowance should vary, and the kid should feel supported, but not spoiled by parents. Our kids are so different. We send #2 child $l00 a month for allowance, as he lives in a pricey city. He's lucky to spend $l5 of that. He's frugal by nature, and doesn't like drinking and clubbing. We're allowing him to save the extra.

#1 child was different, more social, and spent all of the $75 a month we sent. Also, one summer we allowed her to take a very low-paid internship, with the promise that we would make up the summer earnings. She seemed to understand and appreciate the sacrifice.

Our idea is to give the kids enough money that they don't feel like the poorest kids on campus. Been there, done that; didn't build my character any to never afford movies out, always have to grub for jobs. I still am obsessed by the feeling that I'm poor and can't make enough money.

I do think our kids appreciate money and are cautious with it. I'm not convinced some formula of giving or not giving an allowance is the answer; instead, provide enough that they are not deprived, but not so much that they never have to to learn to budget.

By Bigdaddy (Bigdaddy) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 06:02 pm: Edit

Desrtswimer: "...do you guys know how EXPENSIVE that stuff is? ahhh!)"

I think I speak for every parent on this board when I say: Eh, YEAH! We know exactly how expensive that stuff is. We've been paying for it for years.

By Bookworm (Bookworm) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:04 pm: Edit

Where S going, his R & Board only covers lunch & dinner, m-F. He may be frugal, but I'm sure eating out, even in college cafes, will add up on weekends.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 08:17 pm: Edit

Daughter doesn' t have individual meals, it is a point system, certain foods take more points, she has always had the smallest meal plan and always have points left over at end of year.
They found that there was much less food waste than with all you can eat plans
Cafeteria is open for Breakfast thru dinner and a student run snack shop is open late.

By Medusa2003 (Medusa2003) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 10:23 pm: Edit

Daughter pays for books, miscellaneous expenses, and contributes about $100 a month towards tuition. She spends virtually nothing at school since all campus activities are free and the small town where the school is located has little for students to spend money on. Having all campus activities free and virtually nothing happening off campus has its benefits since no one feels deprived by lack of spending money.

By Desrtswimer (Desrtswimer) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 11:40 pm: Edit

I am very aware that my mom has supported me throughout my entire high school career. And the "do you know how expensive that stuff is" comment was a joke.

As a member of the newspaper, the varsity swim team, track team, and other clubs, there was no way i could work DURING the school year. I worked every summer to earn money, and the 6000 i won in outside scholarships, my mom counted as equivilant to working during the school years.

The north face jackets online are all 200 plus dollars. I plan on having the coat for four years, maybe six if i go to grad school in chicago. as i am from phx, a jacket is not something i want to skimp on. I am already cold enough as it is.

I spent the entire flight to chicago working on my budget in excel and creating a spreadsheet that changes everything when i change one factor. Books have cost me less than i planned so i have more money. I have more money left over anyway to save for summer break.

I do not take the money i have been given for granted. BUT i am coming to a school that cost 40000 dollars a year that half the people are NOT on financial aid. I do not want to be excluded from activities in the city and the other advantages that come from going to college in a cultured big city.

Based off of my friends experiences, working during the school year has not always caused them to learn responsibility. Many times their grades have fallen as a result of their job. how is this helping them?

my mom would like to add something to the bottom of this:

As a college student in the 70's I received a generous allowance. I did not work until my senior yr of college except for the summers. As a college professor, I consider going to school to be a FULL time job. My students who have to work have much less time to spend on their schoolwork. I do not wish my D to be worrying about finances now while she is studying to be able to make a good living and give back to the world later.

By Fendergirl (Fendergirl) on Thursday, September 09, 2004 - 11:57 pm: Edit

i dont understand.. working 5 hours a week is NOT going to cause grades to fall down. spend 5 hours a week less online or less watching tv.

5 hours a week is enough to pay for a college freshmans bills at school.

here's a good analysis on how much i spend per month in the summer

car insurance - 42 dollars
cell phone - 20 dollars
gas - roughly 120 dollars
misc. expenses - about 50 dollars

heres an analysis on how much i spend per month during the school year

car insurance - 42 dollars
cell phone - 20 dollars
gas - roughly 80 dollars
food - roughly 50 dollars
misc. expenses - about 50 dollars

i live in an apartment so i buy my own food, 50 dollars is enough for a month. misc expenses would be like going to a club to see a band play, or seeing a friends band play at a local bar that has a cover charge, or if i decide to go out and buy a cd, or attend a concert, or purchase any school related things.. usually its between 30-50 per month during school.

so a college freshman living on campus.. doesnt pay for the food part of that, probably doesn't spend 80 bucks a month on gas (i drive 2 hours home every weekend to work), so even if they just had the other three things.. 5 hours a week would cover all of that.. just my two cents :)

By Desrtswimer (Desrtswimer) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:15 am: Edit

There have been many threads on this topic. If you do a search for "allowance" in the parents forum, you will find these threads.

Some of the other threads better explain how much parents are giving their students. The average montly living allowance was 175-250 dollars depending on the school.

I think it really does depend on the student and the parent. If you want to have your kid work, by all means have them work. If you dont want to, then dont. Each kid spends a different amount of money each month, depending on the culture they grew up in, and each parent can afford a different amount each month.

What some students spend a month will be drastically different than someone else.

ps. fendergirl, who insures your car? i could go for 42 a month. right now im at 350 a month. also, who is your cell phone provider? I could use 20 bucks a month for that also :-) as long as i get my 700 minutes and free long distance since im out of state and all my friends are back home :-)

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:20 am: Edit

The north face jackets online are all 200 plus dollars. I plan on having the coat for four years, maybe six if i go to grad school in chicago. as i am from phx, a jacket is not something i want to skimp on. I am already cold enough as it is.

I don't know how big you are, but my daughter bought a northface jacket in youth sizes for less than $100. same thing as womens virtually indistingushable, but don't be embarassed you didn't think of it, the clerk at REI didn't even realize that they have same stuff in kids!

Kids sizes can be great deals. my 22 year old daughter jsut yesterday bought really cute red leather mary janes at nordstrom kids for $35. She doesn't have especially small feet I think that a kids size 5 is a womens 7 or 8
However if you have opposite problem and are big, mens sizes are often better made and cheaper than womens or at least the smaller men sizes go on sale more often than big womens sizes.
My daughter is attending a school in a big city where many students are not on any aid at all. However what I posted above is true. Lots of cheap things to do in city and on campus.
If you aren't on workstudy then obviously you don't need the money , more power to you, but some students haven't found it a disadvantage to cutting a club or EC and working a couple hours instead.

also check moosejaw.com they have some great buys.

By Desrtswimer (Desrtswimer) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:44 am: Edit

I am not big nor small, but rather a regular womans size. A kids size will not fit me (i have a big :;ahem:: bust area) but neither will a mens size fit me because i am short and therefore the arms, the shoulders, and the waist will be too long and awkward.

I was offered work study. I covered it with scholarships and the work study went away (because they take away from your aid when you earn outside scholarships, not your efc).

Therefore now i cant work work study and most good on campus jobs where you only have to work 5-10 hours a week are work study.

It is not just the jacket that is expensive, it is the shoes, the pants, the sweaters, the long sleve shirts. keep in mind im from arizona. i walk around in flip flops and little white tank tops from target and walmart. i essentially had to start over except for my ONE (one!) pair of shoes and some jeans i owned. it takes a lot of money to do that.

My brother went to college before me (at the university of arziona) and figured out that he spends about 150-200 a month on various things. a hair cut, for example, for me will run about 50 dollars. I know supercuts is MUCH cheaper but every time i go there, they butcher my hair.

By the way, northwestern sent home a thing saying that the average student spends 700 dollars in much money alone. 700 dollars! this is above and beyond the meal plan they are on. so right there is about 90 bucks a month in food. 60-110 beyond that is not impossible, not extravagant, when you factor in cubs games, theatre shows, and just nights out.

I do not plan on spending that 700 a year on munch money. However, the school recommends 175 a month for their students for spending money.

By Nel (Nel) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 07:01 am: Edit

Hi all... thanks for input.... if others post, can you start the repsonse off with:

___ Yes I provide an allowance, its $$ per week
___ No, I do not provide an allowance

Then give your text/reasoning, etc.

<Seems there is great difference between the small town, 2000 kid college that my DD attends, and the WestVirgina state school that my friends son will attend, vs the NYC and Big-City expense school stuff, and also kids who live OFF campus & with no meal plan.>

I wish this Message Board had a POLL feature, that would easily visualize the responses submitted.

Keep 'em coming... I want to share this with my friend. Thanks! Nel

By Mom2003 (Mom2003) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 08:20 am: Edit

Yes. $50/wk

Not sure whether this is a good or a bad thing but he is a good kid and we see no reason to start him out with a lot of stress. This is to be renegotiated next year. I seem to alternate between wanting him to be independent and make his own way and realizing that he has a long work life ahead of him and wanting him to have time to take part in diverse activities. So I guess whether we continue or not depends on his making good use of his time.

By Backhandgrip (Backhandgrip) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 08:52 am: Edit

My kids aren't drinkers!
I sent daughter floor Magic tickets, when the team was good, when she was in college in Orlando.Also floor concert tickets husband and I didn't use to oldest son.

By Alwaysamom (Alwaysamom) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 09:03 am: Edit

Desrtswimer, don't feel that you have to justify your spending habits or budgetting to those on these forums. Everyone does it differently and it's certainly a personal choice which should be made by you and your family. :)

Fendergirl, I think you should realize, as I've said before, that this is a personal choice. No one is suggesting you should give up your job if that's what you choose to do during the school year, and it fits in with your schedule and your ability to do your schoolwork. Conversely, you should accept that not every student wants to work during the school year, or is able to with the schedule they have. Finding a job where you can only work five hours/week is not that easy for most students. Most employers want more than that. Also, what you can earn in five hours of work is not enough that it's going to make a significant difference to most students.

My older daughter had many hours of volunteer work during the school year which were part of her program. My D who is at NYU simply does not have the time for a part-time job. Her schedule is too full with classes, studio, rehearsals, and homework. She does not qualify for workstudy which would mean a job 'off-campus', and it wouldn't be easy to find a five hour a week job which would work around her schedule. Coming from a family of many teachers and college professors, I can tell you that most will recommend that kids do not work during the school year if it is at all possible. I echo Desrtswimer in commenting on your list of monthly expenses. They seem very low to me, not only the insurance and cell-phone, but the groceries. $50 a month for food doesn't buy much. I was in college 30 years ago and each of us in our house contributed $12/week for groceries, way back then!

By Elleneast (Elleneast) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 10:04 am: Edit


I think that you should be very proud of covering your expenses.

You mention that your jobs were on campus and I wonder if they were work-study. At my daughter's school the campus jobs are all work-study based and she does not qualify for them. As a past employer who ran a number of businesses near a college campus and that hired students almost exclusively, I would never have taken on a student who could only work 5 hours/week... no matter how suitable they were for the job. I wonder how many non work-study jobs there are out there that would be so flexible.

These unpaid internships do pose a bit of a dilemma. You want your child to be fiscally responsible but some opportunities are too good to pass up. The NYTimes recently had a story about unpaid internships and the experience that they offer to those who can afford to take advantage of them.......those who can spend a summer not earning a salary. I feel badly for the students who cannot have these experiences because of finances. My daughter did her best to earn $$ a variety of ways during her off hours. That was good enough for me. She will babysit during the school year when she can.

Nel, last year we gave her $50/week and will up it this year because she is buying more of her own food (she has a kitchen). It is going to take a week or two to figure out what she will need but I suspect that she will go from $200 to around $300/month. We will also cover the occasional special occasion ticket or activity. As I said above, she went to school with rather paltry summer earnings that will last a few months.

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 10:30 am: Edit

Most parents that I know provide allowances. $50 a week is a good amount--$200-250 per month. Mine all got allowances their first year away at college really more for money management reasons. I have known kids who have blown their bank accounts/credit cards because they are not used to tracking expenses or spending money and having $2000 sitting there just sounded like a lot of money, and, yes, those seemed to be the kids who often foot the bill for a keg or some other item because they had that chunk of money sitting there. It so depends upon the kid. If your child can manage a large chunk of change or a job, you don't need to give an allowance. But by providing some lump some or allowing them to keep their savings as spending money, it is an allowance of sorts. You could have just taken the lump sum, put it towards the tuition and given an allowance in intervals.

I will tell you that surprisingly my most irresponsible ones have been very tight with their money. The only one that I was getting a little jumpy about was my D. She spend a lot of money her sophomore year on extravagances that we just do not buy at home--full priced clothes, designer stuff, cutting edge stuff, etc. She did some serious shopping and did spend a lot of her money. She also went off campus and out more than any of the other kids. But it was all her money, and I figured it would be a lesson well learned if she ran out before the end of the year--BUT we would have been able to bail her out if push came to shove. I remember in college, a few financial aid kids who left because they spent all of their money too quickly and they were in the category where they truly had to pay for their mistake as there was no money at home, and when they used up the money that should have been budgeted through the school year, that was it.

Bear in mind that many fine adults have money management issues, and though it is wonderful if your child has the discipline to stay on a budget, with some kids who are not quite so mature or are simply more careless that way, an allowance can give them a step by step way of managing. How many adults can just put a hunk of change in an account and budget it through 9 months without running short?

Kids need money for things that come up that you may not have planned for. If you leave your toothpaste in the bathroom, your blow dryer breaks, your glasses fall apart, you find you really should buy a special, expensive book or computer thing for a particular class. Maybe a group will decide to go into the city to see a play and eat out. If you have the money to do some of these things, it can be a great part of the college experience. Some club sports require pitching in with expenses, and eating out if going to other colleges for games. You may need to give a donation for some reason--death or illness of someone at the college. There are lists of things that can come up and to call home each time is really not a step towards maturity. It is an important lesson when you need to replace your glasses one week and cannot go out for pizza as a result. But if the kid foolishly blows his whole year's allowance midway through 1st semester and is now broke, it is an expensive lesson and can be a terrible one that you may not want to pay for. Better he blows $50 one week, has to call you about a $100 important item he needs you to subsidize, and you can talk--about how you will send the $100, but he now gets $25 a week for the next 4 weeks, and that in the future, he should not spend every cent of his money early in the week on something frivolous--had he been more careful, perhaps he would have had $20-30 of the $100 he needs, and you would have been much more impressed, had that occurred instead of him have gone out to an unimportant night on the town for $50 and now is flat broke. If he had $2000 sitting in an account, it is too easy to just not only spend the $50 on extravangances, but come up with $100 expense, and still continue spending until suddenly the bank statement shows less than$100 in the account with second semester still to come.

The allowance also depends on a school. If your student goes to a big city school like NYU or BU , it really is a shame if they cannot partake in some of the city culture and happenings especially since many things are discounted for students. But you still do have to pay something. Other schools have so much on campus that you never have to leave and there is not much outside of the campus grounds.

By Garland (Garland) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 10:44 am: Edit

I respect your experience, Jamimom, but I still think my kids are learning more about money management by taking their own savings accounts to college and monitoring their own spending. This worked fine for my D for all four years.

Though my S is going to college in an expensive city, I still think he can handle it. There's lots he can do for free (well, at least, for the price of subway fare). His student ID gets him into many museums and other places for free. There are lots of lower priced shows; I definitely don't see the need to subsidize Broadway for him! It would be too much micromanaging for me to be sending him money every week. OTOH, if some emergency comes up, we would be more than willing to help out, unless it became a pattern showing an unconcern about expenses--and I just don't see that happening.

By Fosselover (Fosselover) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 10:49 am: Edit

My son lives off campus, so he has to take care of rent, utilities, food. He receives $800/month to cover expenses. How he spends it is his business. He is a senior and has been doing this since sophomore year. The landlord has never come looking for me, so the essentials must be getting taken care of. If he needs more money to cover "extras", he picks up part-time work.

By Fendergirl (Fendergirl) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 10:59 am: Edit

on my campus, you don't have to be work-study to work. many places on my campus such as the school cafeteria, lab assistants, the library, the school store, and the IT help desk can hire anyone. if your kids want to work they should go to places like this and inquire.. if theyre lucky.. maybe their campuses can hire anyone too. it all depends on their budget that the place of employment is allotted.

i was work grant, and i could work 5 hours a week. last year, i decided i didnt want to do it anymore because i wanted to work more, so my boss switched me over and put me on his payroll, so I could work more. my roommate freshman year worked 5 hours a week at the library - she wasn't work study or anything. i hang out with some kids that work in the cafeteria..
there are jobs to be had, if you look.. (at my school anyway)

also - 50 dollars a month does cover food for a month. i go grocery shopping twice a month and it's about 25 dollars each time. super walmart is the best :) i do live with 4 other girls though, so we have like.. milk, bread, eggs, stuff like that that we share so it doesn't go bad. no reason to have five things of eggs in the fridge. we also share drinks - it's hard to keep 5 peoples different drinks in the fridge.. so we dont have to each buy our own drinks, we'll each buy like one thing.. it cuts down on costs. also sometimes one of us will cook a meal and itll feed everyone, or we'll have a bbq outside on my grill.. nice cheap meals :)

cell phone - i have a family plan with my parents on t-mobile. it's 40 for the first phone, and 10 for any additional phones. we have four phones total so it's 70 dollars a month. my sister and i have insurance on our phones, so it's 80 dollars a month.. 80/4=20 per month. we have 400 day minutes, unlimited night/weekend minutes, and unlimited mobile-mobile minutes so we can call each other whenever we want unlimitedly.

car insurance - i believe i have erie isurance, i used to have allstate but we switched because the rates were cheaper - my insurance also just went down a little bit when i turned 21. i think most companies don't put it down till you turn 25? i might as well enjoy my cheap insurance while i can - i plan on buying a new(er) car in febuary or march! then i can watch it go up A LOT! but then in march i'll have to add a monthly car payment to my list of expenses.. which won't be a problem because i have money saved up.

also for my gas expense, although i do spend about 80 dollars a month on gas to go home and go to work - i get paid for my traveling expenses, so i get reimbursed for that in my paychecks.

i do agree that unpaid internships are a problem.. i think anyone who does these must be an awesome person (or have very nice parents) because i wouldn't be able to go without earning any money. i really need to keep up on my bills :)

and as for what i can make in five hours a week - even if i made 5 bucks an hour, thats 25 bucks a week x 4 weeks, that's 100 bucks a month. I think a student living on campus in a dorm freshman year could live on 100 bucks a month. and very little of that will go to taxes since its such a small amount of money earned. unless the kid is in like NYC or something where the expenses are much more.

well i have to go to work now.

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 11:35 am: Edit

After freshman year, my kids just lived off of the money they earned the summer before and some campus jobs. It was not a problem for them either. But I just did not know how it would go. This next one may well be a spend thrift. He does not have the opportunity or the money to spend right now, but I would be leery about giving him a big piece of money for the semester initially. But he may well manage as the others did.

As I said before, it depends on the child. I do know that I blew my money when I went off to college, which put me in some trouble as my parents did not have much, so I had to come up with it somehow. I piled on the jobs, took a semester off, and took out loans. It was an expensive lesson. And it did not take as I repeated the same mistake when I first got out of school and found a job. I still have to keep careful tabs on my spending, as I easily can go over budget--just the way I am, and money issues were a big problem for us for many years. I truly have to make a commitment to austerity or I can have problems, and I budget myself with a household account and cash budget that I have to monitor regularly and keep in check. I have to admit my kids have been much better than I ever was or am in money matters.

By Rhonda63 (Rhonda63) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 11:46 am: Edit

It definitely depends on the child. There are plenty of adults who blow all the money they have at any given time, so if you're concerned about a kid doing that, just dole it out monthly (or weekly, whatever).

I have to say -- you do NOT need a $300 jacket to stay warm!!! If you want to buy a particular expensive jacket for fashion reasons, that's fine, but you will find super-warm ones for much, much less (try LL Bean or Lands' End for good down jackets, w/o the North Face logo, of course!). My D is in New England and has one down jacket that was $65 (on sale), and three wool coats ($100, $25, and $20).

By Thedad (Thedad) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 11:55 am: Edit

As a parent in a warm-weather environment with a D sent off to a cold-weather environment, I can say that the clothing expense is not insignificant and that it did not seem prudent to buy much *before* D was on the scene and could see what others were wearing/suggesting. We gave her a $400 budget to work with. A coat or two (different weights), boots, hat, scarves, long underwear, not to mention just regular cool/cold weather clothing like shirts/tops...we figure it adds up. Even with that, we overlooked the simple fact of the necessity of a raincoat *immediately*. Sustained downpour = on-line order to Lands End to cover that...first week of classes didn't seem to be the best time to have D foraging around Northampton in search of raincoat, getting even wetter, though in general we expect her to figure out some way of covering her needs on her own now.

By Irishbird (Irishbird) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:26 pm: Edit

I agree with fendergirl that there can be other on-campus jobs that aren't work-study. Many jobs are relegated to work-study, but there are depts. that pay out of their budget dollars, one eg. is lifeguards for the pool in the athletic dept.; the marketing dept. runs an service with an outside company to check phone lines (it's for retail research....to find out what kind of phone line it is & then data entry it somehow so that telephone lists are up to date)- they hire students to do this work; the Admissions office hires students to be tour guides or overnight hosts, dining service hires some waiters/waitresses to work special campus functions etc.
I agree that it's best not to work too many hrs during the academic yr, but some of these jobs can be great for resume-building when seniors begin the job search..always nice to be able to put down that the student financed X% of college education.

By Mom60 (Mom60) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:32 pm: Edit

Good places to look for deals on high quality outerwear are REI Outlet online and Sierra Trading Post. Sierra Trading Post has a wide range of different items. If you know what you want it is a great place to check. You can save tons.
Mine is not in college yet so we have not figured out what we will do for an allowance. Alot will probably depend on where she goes. Though most friends I have talked to in our town give their children allowances and pay for most things.
We are actually trying to figure out a system this year with our D to teach her to manage her money before she goes off to school.
When I went off years ago I received money from the government as Dad was a disabled Vet. I found that I had plenty of money once I figured that I could work in the dorm cafeteria and get half my room and board covered for 5 hours a week. Washed alot of pots. The problem with the kid who doesn't have much is they miss out on alot or someone else ends up covering their share so they don't miss out.

By Aparent4 (Aparent4) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 12:47 pm: Edit

Another good place to look, if you know a particular brand name and size fits you, is Ebay.

My kids earn their own spending money in the summer, though we did fund their wardrobes ahead of time.

I worked all through college and found it really got in the way of my being able to do ECs. I was interested in the fact that when Ruth Simmons, a former scholarship kid herself, took over the Brown presidency she immediately told finaid not to require students to take jobs during their first year.

My kids have chosen to take unsubsidized Stafford loans instead of working during the school year, which makes sense to me because when it's time to pay them back they will be earning at a higher rate (presumably). However, not everyone can choose one or the other.

Their university will help out a finaid student who gets an unpaid summer internship or research opportunity by making up the lost earnings with half grant, half loan. There are also opportunities for students to take their campus job assignments in community-service settings. And as at many schools there are departmental and alumni grants for summer internships and research. There's a lot out there for kids who do a little digging.

By Bookworm (Bookworm) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 01:26 pm: Edit

In college, I was in Student Council. That was probably my connection to selling tickets for football games and concerts. Most of the time I could study. Also, got choice seats.
Not expecting anything of S first year. Fortunately, his school has summer program where kids hook up with professors around world, and he gets paid well.
I like the idea of srving food or being an RA, where R & B are then free or half off, at least starting second year

By Fosselover (Fosselover) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 02:10 pm: Edit

How much is so dependant on where the student is living. $50 s month for food would never make it where my soon is going. I know because I went grocery shopping. Of course he is 6' 4" and very physically active. Fendergirl: You are doing a great job, but 5 hrs. a week at minimum wage wouldn't cover the expenses you list per month. What the major is makes a major difference too. If your student is in performing arts, they are expected to see performances. There are extra clothing expenses (dance shoes). Rehearsal and class time doesn't leave many hours in the day, plus the schedule is all twisted. But book costs are less, a Science major has HUGE book costs and lab fees. What do you expect the allowance to cover? This is not the simple answer Nel was looking for is it!!

By Fendergirl (Fendergirl) on Friday, September 10, 2004 - 02:35 pm: Edit

of course 5 hours a week at minimum wage couldn't cover my expenses that i have right now .. but i was saying about a freshman student living in a dorm. they shouldnt have to spend 50 dollars a month on food, or 80 dollars a month on gas, as most freshman don't have cars.. so in that case, 5 hours a week x 5 bucks an hour would cover their expenses.. of course it wouldnt cover books, but normal living expenses.. yes, it would.. trust me, i did it freshman and sophomore year :)

By Outwest5 (Outwest5) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 12:52 am: Edit

I did not ask for either of my college age girls to get a little job first semester. I DID ask them to work in the summers and save as much as possible so they did not have to work for a while.I told them that it was important to get adjusted to college first. So, I gave each $80 a month for personal expenses (remember they had their savings, too)which was to buy any little things like chapstick or a donut or socks or go to a movie or pay for the BART or bus or maybe a little gas money for a friend with a car. Maybe a lunch out on a Saturday? I did not feel this was too much, in fact I know many who have given a LOT more.

After first semester both got jobs that were about 8-10 hours a week. I did continue to give them $80 a month (because I wanted to), but now they had another $150 or so that they used to buy toothpaste, shampoo, clothes, etc. Both again worked near fulltime in the summers and both saved a lot and helped with their books for the year.

I don't feel taken advantage of and I believe that a little monthly stipend (not too much) is a good idea. I think not giving any at all will make him want to work too much in school.

By Dmd77 (Dmd77) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 11:08 am: Edit

I'm curious about whether the parents' situations when they were in college determines the college allowance (or no allowance) for the child. I had no allowance, was expected to use a small social security check to cover my food, books, clothes, etc.--everything except tuition and rent. I always felt strapped for cash (I typed papers for extra money), bought my clothes at Goodwill (or made them myself), ate a lot of peanut butter and canned tuna (when it was on sale) and powdered milk. I had just barely enough money, certainly none for entertainment or taking advantage of Boston.

I give my kids an allowance so that they won't have to scrounge. Both have still gotten jobs and have figured out how to save a lot of money on food, mostly by cooking for themselves. I do notice that they call and ask if I will pay for the extra resources they need--the "recommended" text as opposed to the required texts.

So here's the question: did you scrounge for every penny in college or did you have an allowance or did you live at home? And how does all that influenced what you provide (or want to provide) for your kids?

By Nel (Nel) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 11:32 am: Edit

<To Above poster, DMD77>...not to hijack the thread I started. My post/thread here was to ask or poll others here if they do, or do not provide an "allowance" to their College Kids, who are in a dorm on room/board plan. I did not attend college, so that has no bearing on my post>.

Folks, how do I 'search' here in these forums to find any prior posting that discuss the Allowance factor? I'd need instructions on how to do this search, so I can check other folks opinions.

I didn't want to start WW3 here about cost of winter coats, who spends what on which, how much food costs in NYC vs Bo-hunk town or what.

I was only humbly seeking input about 1) yes I provide an allowance, or 2) no I do not.

Thanks again!

By Alwaysamom (Alwaysamom) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 11:49 am: Edit

If you stay around here for any length of time, Nel, you'll find that discussions often take many turns in each thread. It's normal and there's no way to control it, so I wouldn't admonish anyone for 'hijacking' your thread. You've had lots of input and opinions here as to who does what. What possible purpose could it serve to obtain even more?

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 12:16 pm: Edit

o here's the question: did you scrounge for every penny in college or did you have an allowance or did you live at home? And how does all that influenced what you provide (or want to provide) for your kids?

I wasn't living at home the short time I attended college before I married, I had moved out when I was 17, using social security to help pay expenses as well as a part time job. I had no idea there was other financial aid available, although I was attending community college so in my case there probably wasn't. I used social security to pay tuition and books and was lucky that I had roommates who allowed me to give what I could. THey weren't inschool and were making much more than I was.
I do expect my kids to work, to earn their spending money. They qualify for workstudy jobs and with my daughter computer tech job $10 a 5 hrs a week, is not bad for spending money even after taxes. However if she did not qualify for workstudy and would have to travel off campus to work ( without a car) I would probably give her an allowance of maybe $50 a month and expect her to work more summers to add to it.

( There is a message search function to left of screen, simply chose search term and area for a search)
Don't feel bad if everyone doesn't stick closely to the original question, although from my perspective they have. It is kinda like a cocktail party someone might introduce a topic but it veers around a little bit.

By Backhandgrip (Backhandgrip) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 12:21 pm: Edit

Right, I scrounged (and husband too)and am generous with the kids.That's okay. It makes everyone nice, not spoiled.Nobody is cranky or talking about how others,' should get a job like them'.We have a happy, content family.

By Backhandgrip (Backhandgrip) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 12:23 pm: Edit

Right, I scrounged (and husband too)and am generous with the kids.That's okay. It makes everyone nice, not spoiled.Nobody is cranky or talking about how others,' should get a job like them'.We have a happy, content family.

By Mom101 (Mom101) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 01:17 pm: Edit

I worked for my spending money in high school and college. But it's a different world today. These kids need spectacular ECs to get into top colleges and grad schools. Not to mention top grades. Allowing them to focus on these things is a gift. So I don't think it's spoiling kids if you can afford to give them an allowance. Unless my kids take on an attitude of entitlement, I'm happy to let them have some meals out (I created their gourmet tastes) and even subsidize theater tickets as to me, that's part of their education. They can get jobs if they want more than what I feel is reasonable and an education related expense.

By Anxiousmom (Anxiousmom) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 01:31 pm: Edit

No, don't provide allowance. (Jeez - I can't even remember if I already replied to this thread or not..... the old brain ain't what it used to be!) DD earned 2500. this summer - if it doesn't last the year, she will find an on-campus job (lots available even if you don't have work/study). I actually pay her cell phone this year (it's part of a family plan - w/taxes and all it works out to 25$ per person) - because she received another scholarship that helped reduce our costs - but next year, she will contribute $25. a month to her cell phone. She is great at stretching a dollar (friends cut her hair, or I do), isn't interested in clothes , and seems to do just fine with tons of hand-me-downs from friends and relies, and she has been lucky at the "sharing" at her college. Several kids lent her textbooks she needs, and she bought several used for very low prices. She'll be fine without help from us.
I didn't receive much money from home as a student, but I never felt deprived. I found neat jobs (worked as a cook's helper in the President's house - free food), massaged runner's legs for a endurance training study, was a simulated patient for a med school, etc.) It was all good!

By Aparent4 (Aparent4) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 02:03 pm: Edit

I did scrounge, and I worked some spectacularly boring jobs until Federal work-study kicked in and I got some great community service experience. My attitude now is that we are paying a small fortune for our kids to take advantage of a school whose resources and opportunities they could not exhaust if they attended it for 20 years rather than 4. I would rather they put their energies into ECs and academics and confine their paid work to the summers, when it has been a great learning opportunity as well as a source of a full year's spending money.

One tricky thing: who pays the student's spending money in the summers? Before s went off to college and came home, we hadn't really thought about this question. If the student is saving to have spending money during the school year, he or she is not so eager to deplete it while earning it. So we did give a $30/week allowance all summer.

By Emeraldkity4 (Emeraldkity4) on Saturday, September 11, 2004 - 04:56 pm: Edit

My daughter earns about $3000 - $ 4000 a summer. She usually has $2000 earmarked to pay toward tuiton , $1000 to upgrade her technology every other year or so, and the rest she uses to get new clothes and other stuff. She never really has been a high maintance girl, she wears thrft shop clothes, little makeup , no car expenses, and she would rather find the way to pay for a concert or trip than to ask us to pay. THis is her personality, we can't really take credit for it.
She has been lucky to have great workstudy jobs. Freshman year she was a tutor off campus which wasn't so great as she had to bus to the high school and it was minimum wage, but sophmore year she worked in the stockroom in the bio labs and it was a nice low pressure job. The computer lab pays more and she has more hours, but she can do homework during slow times and most of the time being able to help someone get their hard drive problems untangled is satisfying and offsets all those who don't think the admonitions to update their virus software/backup/defrag, applies to them.
She has had to make some choices, she works summers instead of participating in summer programs at Oxford, or touring the Seine. Oh, well, in our family life starts when you are born and learning to make choices is part of that.
We don't look at it as limiting her by not financially supporting every idea that might come up. She has always been a financial aid kid, and it hasn't made her bitter, in fact I know that she really appreciates the opportunities she has had, and has made the most of them.

By Vbtwins (Vbtwins) on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 01:21 pm: Edit

This may not be what everybody wants to hear but, here goes.............. When my boys work in the summer, it goes into their savings accounts so they can draw off of it for college spending money. I will happily provide any additonal, reasonable funds for them during their school year. Why? Because we can AND most importantly, because they are and always have been holding up their end of the deal. I feel that it's my responsibility as a parent to provide for my children up to a certain point. I have nothing to prove to them. They have shown me that they are responsible in many ways. It is my pleasure to lighten their loads while they enjoy this wonderful opportunity called education. They have never abused our generousity. I will happily take care of any of their resonable financial needs above what they earn in the summer. My parents provided very well for me when I was a college student, and I learned to be responsible with money, I have no doubt that my boys will do the same.

By Vbtwins (Vbtwins) on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 01:27 pm: Edit

I wanted to add that my post was with respect to spending money. We pay their tuition, room and board,, computer, cell phone, and all that goes along with that. While they are still under our care, I feel that it's our responsibiltiy to take care of their clothing, toiletries, contacts, glasses, major trips etc. I am just speaking to my opinion on spending money.

By Kathiep (Kathiep) on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 02:38 pm: Edit

We pay tuition, room and board, cell phone bill ($20/Month) and that's about it. DD got an extra $1,000 scholarship this year that will take care of her books. She earns about $1200 a summer as a camp counselor and then another $1,000 during her winter break. (She has a long winter break) Starting this year (she's a sophomore) she'll work 10 hours a week on campus. I think she gets $5.00 an hour and also tuition credit. So cash for her and less tuition for us. We really didn't talk to much about who would pay for what. Our daughter is a real spendthrift and she's never gotten an allowance. She's worked summer jobs since she was 16 and just budgets her money. When it came time for college it just made sense for her to pay for her expenses.

If she drives home, she pays for her part of the gas (no car at college) but if she flies, we pay for the flight. I prefer flying - it's faster, safer and with Southwest, almost cheaper! As others have said, each student is different; location of schools, activites, meal plan, transportation - all of that makes a big difference. My D doesn't drink and lives on a rural campus. She and her friends go to concerts about once a month, shop at the superwalmart and target for weekend entertainment and do a lot of campus activities. With her meal plan, small savings and part time job there's absolutely no reason for an allowance.

By Lilyemerald (Lilyemerald) on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 02:52 pm: Edit

i would so love to work on campus but i can't cos everything is for like work study.. and then i can't work off campus because i'm an international student... i only made S$700 this summer so that equates to rougly US$412... i don't have board cos apparently in apartment style living with the kitchen and what i don't need one.. ( i requested for dorm...) can you survive on $412 for 4 and a half months? i doubt it... so i get an allowance, sort of.. i'm trying to make it last as long as possible.. but i would so love to get a job.. any suggestions?

By Upandover (Upandover) on Sunday, September 12, 2004 - 09:10 pm: Edit

My mum gave me this lump sum of money... I have a lot of it, in fact it could pay off my student loan and more. However, the voice of my mum rings in my ear when I think about buying anything expensive.. so I don't even have a printer at the moment.

I wish my mum would just give me an allowance instead of letting me decide what to spend. I feel really guilty about spending ANY money. An allowance: I'll probably spend it all up.

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